There’s no denying that the Yankees — Red Sox rivalry has been on the dimmer side over the past 10 years, but it looks like that may no longer be the case after Wednesday night’s drama-filled Yankee win.
Heading into the Wednesday night’s contest, the Yankees trailed the first place Red Sox by 4.5 games, and were looking to rebound following their dreadful 14-1 loss on Tuesday — which is precisely what they did.
With the combined offensive resurgence of Gary Sanchez (two homers, double, four RBI) along with the continued improved hitting of Giancarlo Stanton (three hits, triple, three RBI), the Yanks rebounded nicely, producing a 10-7 win, trimming Boston’s division lead to 3.5 games.
Despite the Bombers’ bats finally waking up, that wouldn’t be the story of the night.
The headliner is that baseball’s most storied rivalry is officially back
It all began on a Tyler Wade bunt in the third inning that would advance Neil Walker to third base, forcing Tyler Austin out at second. And that’s where the controversy begins.
A disputed “dirty slide” from Austin that saw his left foot rise a little too high for Red Sox shortstop Brock Holt’s liking would cause enough of an uproar to clear the benches. Nonetheless, no punches would be thrown, yet.
Fast forward to the seventh inning and a 98 mph fastball from Joe Kelly, directly hitting Austin’s elbow. It would be the final spark the rivalry needed to reestablish the dislike between these two storied franchises.
Four ejections and a bench-clearing brawl later, baseball has it’s most historic rivalry back to where it needs to be. Legitimate.
Now, it may not share the same hatred that the 2003-05 soap opera possessed, but it’s certainly the highest dose of drama we’ve witnessed between these two clubs since, and it’s not just eyewash.
The 2018 New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox are potent powerhouses that are set to contend with each other for years to come. Put the drama aside, these two teams are good, and there’s no way around it.
With young stars in Aaron Judge, Mookie Betts, Gary Sanchez, Rafael Devers and others, this isn’t just a short-term media-hyped story. Baseball has it’s rivalry back, and it’s here to stay.